Yajña and Sanskaar, rituals and sacraments, have been an important segment of the sum-total Reform work initiated by Rishi Dayananda Saraswati. The importance that the Rishi had laid on rituals and sacraments was so great that he wrote two separate books on the subject – the Pancha
Mahaa Yajña Vidhi1 and the Sanskaar Vidhi. Both these books, along with the Satyaarth Prakaash, have provided Arya Samaj with powerful tools in its revolutionary crusade to establish the paramountcy of Vaidik Dharma within and outside the borders of India. Arya Samaj Preachers have used these texts to teach the rich ritual culture that has been a part of age-old Vedic/Hindu History and Tradition, and to affirm that this culture gave birth to
illustrious personalities like Shri Raam, Shri Krishna,
Maataa Seetaa, Chhatra-pati Shivaaji, Rishi Dayananda and so many more. Historians of the Indian Renaissance Period acknowledge the influence of Rishi Dayananda’s Sanskaar Vidhi in the resuscitation of Yajña and Sanskaar
practices in modern times.
This book, Arya Satsang Pradeep, seeks to present to speakers of both Hindi and English a clear insight into the deeper meanings of Sandhyaa and Havan. Of course, several Arya Samaj scholars have already translated these two Yajñas into both languages. Some of the most distinguished translators in India include Pandit
Chamoopati, Mahashai Raajpaal, Acharya Vishwa-shravaah Vyaas, Acharya Vaidyanath Shastri, Acharya Yudhishthir Mimansaka, Swami Samarpananda, Swami Jagdishwarananda, Swami Deekshananda, Swami Satya Prakash Saraswati, Pandit Madan Mohan Vidyasagar, Pandit Satyavrat Siddhantalankar, Pandit Bhimsena Sharma and others. Scholars who served as Arya Samaj Missionaries in the Hindu Diaspora and published
translations include Bhawani Dayal Sannyasi, Professor Bhaskarananda,7 and Dr. Pandit Usharbudh Arya.
The above-mentioned scholars are my superiors and role models in the field of Vedic Interpretation of Bhakti Darpan fame. This current work does not, in any major way, deviate from what any of these scholars has written on the subject of Sandhyaa and Havan. In fact, this translation and commentary seeks only to enhance the Yajña traditions that these Acharyas have institutionalized. I have carefully consulted their writings, and I have submitted to the rulings of the Saarvadeshik Dharmaa’rya Sabhaa (the supreme Religious Council of the International Aryan League) stationed at New Delhi, Delhi. This Council is made up of principal scholars of Arya Samaj who have studied the works of Rishi Dayananda and ancient ritual literature called Grihya and Shrauta Sutras. To ensure uniformity in Yajña practices in Arya Samaj, it becomes obligatory for Samaj Centers to follow the rulings of this Sabhaa. To do otherwise will only create unnecessary confusion within the ranks of Arya Samaj.
During the years I have lived both in the Western World and in India, I have had the chance to interact with people who repose a profound sense of belief and trust in Sandhyaa and Havan. These people seek inner peace from these two Yajñas. However, I have always seen them struggling to understand the deeper meanings of these two rituals. This current work is in response to that need felt by Arya/Hindu practitioners. It embodies an Introductory Essay, Sanskrit text, Roman transliteration, Hindi and English translations, and notes. This publication is the final result of years of formal study and research, teaching and lecturing, and personal contemplation.
This is not my first attempt to publish on the Sandhyaa and Havan. At age twelve, I had transliterated the Mantras of these two Yajñas for use among teenagers in my home Mandir, the Uitvlugt Arya Samaj, in Guyana. Insignificant as it had seemed then, that effort motivated me to attempt a much larger work in 1974. Called Vaidik Pradeep, this new book incorporated a transliteration and translation of the Sandhyaa and Havan, and even of some